A Turkish administrative court has ordered the Interior Ministry and the Malatya Governor’s Office to pay compensation damages to the families of three Christians murdered nearly nine years ago in the Zirve Christian publishing house in Malatya, in eastern Turkey.

Ruling that the two government institutions were “negligent in their duty to family members of the victims”, the court ordered that just over $110,000 be paid to each of the widows of Tilmann Geske and  Necati Aydin, and to the father of Ugur Yuksel, for “emotional distress” and “physical harm”.

The 26 Jan. judgment was welcomed by Turkey’s Protestant Christians, who considered it an acknowledgment that state authorities had failed in their duty towards the three Christians. The men had been stabbed and killed with knives in their office on 18 April, 2007 by a handful of young assailants.

Nearly nine years later, the long-delayed trial proceedings against the five defendants and some 20 accused perpetrators are still on-going, with the 110th hearing set for 1 March.

Source: Middle East Concern